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How can we best chart children’s growth in the paperless age? The UK experience
  1. Charlotte Margaret Wright1,
  2. Simon Chapman2,
  3. Tim J Cole3
  1. 1 Department of Human Nutrition, School of Medicine Veterinary & Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  2. 2 Department of Child Health, King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  3. 3 Population Policy and Practice Programme, Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health, University College London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Charlotte Margaret Wright, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G12 8QQ, UK; charlotte.wright{at}


Growth charts have played an integral part in the monitoring and assessment of children’s health for the past 50 years, but their use is now under threat as paperless electronic systems become more widely used. While the obvious solution is to adopt electronic charting systems, this can prove challenging in practice. This article describes the key issues to consider in planning this transition and the charting options available, ranging from bespoke local systems to commercial packages and a new initiative by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.

  • Growth
  • Information Technology

Data availability statement

Data sharing is not applicable as no data sets were generated and/or analysed for this study.

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Data availability statement

Data sharing is not applicable as no data sets were generated and/or analysed for this study.

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  • Contributors CMW, SC and TJC jointly conceived, designed and drafted the manuscript and are its guarantors. They affirm that the manuscript is an honest, accurate and transparent account.

  • Funding There was no specific funding for the preparation of this paper.

  • Competing interests TJC and CMW serve on the advisory board for the RCPCH digital chart project, but have received no payment for this work and have no financial interest in the product. SC is employed by the RCPCH as a software developer to build and maintain the RCPCH Digital Growth Chart Platform.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Supplemental material This content has been supplied by the author(s). It has not been vetted by BMJ Publishing Group Limited (BMJ) and may not have been peer-reviewed. Any opinions or recommendations discussed are solely those of the author(s) and are not endorsed by BMJ. BMJ disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on the content. Where the content includes any translated material, BMJ does not warrant the accuracy and reliability of the translations (including but not limited to local regulations, clinical guidelines, terminology, drug names and drug dosages), and is not responsible for any error and/or omissions arising from translation and adaptation or otherwise.